They’ve all dined beneath the glass chandeliers and golden curtains at NoMo Kitchen and after getting a taste of what Executive Chef N. Salaam is dishing out, it’s easy to see why this New York hotspot has superb star power.
With a reputation as a neighborhood for burgeoning artists and upscale designer boutiques, Soho exudes creativity and passion, both of which you will find at NOMO Kitchen. Situated inside the NOMO Hotel, this glamorous restaurant delivers a high-class dining experience in an atmosphere that makes you forget you’re in a city of skyscrapers andnot a fairytale ballroom. On aesthetics alone, NOMO Kitchen gets a 10—when you have to walk through a gorgeous tunnel of greenery and fairy lights just to get inside, the mood’s already set before you even get to your table. Open and airy, the glass chandeliers and expansive skylights mingle with the golden curtains to create a feeling of regality. If you think it stops there, prepare yourself, the royal treatment is just beginning.
Dinner here is like something from a dream. The service is impeccable yet casual, as we discovered at the hands of our server, Drew. Quick to be table-side at a moment’s notice but never hovering or encroaching on privacy, the staff is well trained to present guests with the perfect amount of attention. Seated and with the first round of cocktails on their way, we looked to Drew to recommend and deliver a special dining experience. The menu at NOMO Kitchen provides delicious deliverance from the everyday and with his extensive knowledge, Drew didn’t disappoint.
These days cocktails seem to go overboard with ingredients but this simple, clean cocktail is just right. Belvedere, rosemary-infused agave and lemon juice is all you need.
The presentation of this dish took our breath away and so did the flavor. Bigeye tuna, a gorgeous house-made cracker and yuzu whole grain mustard. Spectacular.
The Branzino (pictured) and the Wagyu are both excellent entree choices, depending on whether you’re looking for farm or fish. If you aren’t familiar, Branzino is another name for a type of European Sea Bass and this one’s served with the skin on and cooked to flaky perfection. The Wagyu Bavette is on a whole other level and is the best steak I’ve ever had (and I’ve had some nice steaks over the years). The cuts are all sourced from Snake River Farms in Idaho, and cooked a la plancha, resulting in the most sinfully delicious caramelized outer crust I’ve ever tasted.
Our hearts melted when my dining companion and I got a taste of this ice cream. Who would have thought squash would make a delicious ice cream counterpart to chocolate mousse? The flower petal accents and perfect plating make this dessert a knockout to end the night.
During our visit, Executive Chef N. Salaam was enjoying what we’re sure was a well-earned evening off but we had the pleasure of meeting Pastry Chef, Cristal Paredes.
Cristal, 26, is a Jersey native who started baking in high school and has been following her passion for pastries ever since. After attending The Culinary Institute of America, she went on to do an externship at Aureole New York by Charlie Palmer, where she fell in love with the fast paced lifestyle of being in the weeds and on the move. When asked what she loves most about cooking for other people,
I like the feeling that once whatever it is you’re making is done, whether its an appetizer or dessert, you give it to the customer or the client and they love it…that’s it. It’s like, wow. It’s the happy response from the customer—that’s what I do it for.
Cristal’s passion for food, along with that of Executive Sous Chef Gregory Joseph (who we also had the pleasure of meeting), are what make every dish that leaves the kitchen at NOMO an absolute delight. This New York hotspot has earned it’s chops and after a lovely evening under the glittering chandeliers, we can whole-heartedly agree that they’ve got what it takes to make the A-list.